An orthodontist from Wetherby with a passion for gadgets has become one of the first dental specialists in the UK to develop her own iPhone app.
The SendASmile app was devised by Megan Hatfield of Wetherby Orthodontics and allows users to take a photo of their teeth then send it in for professional orthodontic assessment.
It can be hard for patients to give accurate information over the phone about how crowded their teeth are or what their overbite is like so a photo is very useful and means I can often spot things the patient or their dentist might not notice.
She hopes the app will help patients currently undergoing treatment to keep in touch and anyone considering orthodontic work to make initial enquiries. She believes it will be particularly useful for reaching out to the growing adult orthodontic market.
There’s a popular misconception that orthodontics is an area that generally involves the treatment of children but adult orthodontics is a rapidly growing field in the UK and half my patients are over 18, with many in their 40s, 50s and 60s.
Many adult patients are very nervous about going to the dentist or making an appointment to see a specialist so I hope this will make us more approachable.
SendASmile was designed by Wetherby technology firm Appware whose offices are coincidentally based in Megan’s former dental practice. It’s free to download and has been developed to include a twitter feed, blog posts, links to Facebook and YouTube, directions to the practice and an information video.
When Megan first came up with the idea she researched the market and discovered very few dental apps in the UK.
From the investigations I’ve done so far I think this is a first from a Yorkshire dentist and I don’t think any other UK orthodontist has developed their own app
Megan used Twitter to communicate with patients in the snowy weather last year keeping them updated on changes to opening times and local traffic conditions.
I’m a bit geeky when it comes to technology and I’m also very conscious that it’s no longer enough for a business to simply have a website. Phones are used for so much more than just calling people and anything that makes it easier for people to get in touch has to be a good thing.